Author Topic: Escapes-Smuggled messages  (Read 2811 times)

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Offline FaceKhan

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Escapes-Smuggled messages
« on: June 01, 2001, 03:54:22 PM »
Escapes-Smuggled messages
For those of you who successfully escaped or almost successfully escaped, how did you do it. What would you recomend to someone trying to escape. Did people help you, how far did you have to go before you felt safe. What are the legal ramifications for escapeing or helping someone escape from a non-court ordered program.


Also, did any of you have any luck with smuggling messages in or out, any ideas for simple codes. Especially those in wilderness programs, were you allowed letters from your parents during the camping/hiking portion of your program. I am thinking of faking a letter from my friend's parents and then using some of the little catch phrases that we always throw around, let him know it is me sending the letter and then include some sort of secret message. I thought about lemon juice aka. invisible ink or possibly purposely mispelling some words with extra letters to form a message.  

« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
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Offline KimberlyNJ

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« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2001, 09:55:15 AM »
escape letters etc.
As for KIDS, (the place I was in).  I had to realize for myself that I wanted to get out.  There was no real way of contacting  me...just make sure that if you get a strange phone call one day that you GO GET that person, or at least do your best to retrieve that phone call and where it came from.  

My father wasn't involved with the program , and he told me after I got out, that he heard I was on third phase and went to my school to get me. (I was already set-back to 1st phase by the time he did this)  That's an idea.  As for the letter, it's an idea, but it could only get that person nin trouble.  It MIGHT get to him, but then he also might not get the "secret message" and if he gets it, that would probably mean that staff that read the letter prior to him reading it would get the message also.  They are trained to look for that sort of thing.

I hope anything you try works, but don't get your hopes up.

I also found out after KIDS that one night when I was a 1st phaser and going home with other people, that all my friends were standing outside the program one night protesting and looking for me to try and pull me from a car...I remember the night, because all the old comers told us newcomers to put our headds down so as not to see anything.  So, I didn't even know it was them!

A lot of efforts are useless, but do what you can...always!

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Offline Antigen

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Escapes-Smuggled messages
« Reply #2 on: June 01, 2001, 01:29:06 PM »
Re: Escapes-Smuggled messages
Have you talked to this kid's parents at all? I know they're probably the ones who put them there. And so they're probably some of those TOUGHLOVE idiots who don't want to listen to anything. But it might be worth a shot to just give them what you know so far about the people they've turned their son over to.


Another strategy, when someone joins a cult like this, their neighbors and co-workers notice and gossip. You might try and connect with some adults who would be sincerely interested in their friends' wellbeing. `Course, things might be different in this case because, as I understand it, the parents don't get all that involved. They've just 'sent a kid off to private school'.


Are you still on for that protest? Taking a bull horn to the scene is probably the best way to send a message. Before you draw attention to yourself, though, you might want to try and find allies in town, or feel things out a little. See what the local sheriff thinks about all of this. Generally, Mountaineers hold personal privacy as a high tenet of the local culture. They won't give a crap what's going on on someone else's private property. But something like this is bound to bring trouble to the area, and they hate that more than anything, especially with WV trying to get in on the tourist industry.


Bottom line, a LOT of these kids have had good friends on the outside trying to get them out over the past 30 years. They're pretty good at preventing that from happening. Your friend is probably being told that no one outside the camp cares for him, including his parents. And after awhile, he might start to believe that. If he's not trying to break out or to contact you, that's the reason. But keep trying. Post missing posters with his picture around town if you're up for a confrontation. That might get some people talking. Might also get you a free stay in the local jail if law enforcement is on cozy terms with the school.

-If there's a worse idea going than locking kids up for victimless crimes, it's probably locking them in close proximity to some tyrannical altruist bent on helping them even if it kills them.
http://trebach.org/conference.html'>Saving our Children from Drug Treatment Abuse

« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
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Offline Tony LL

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« Reply #3 on: June 01, 2001, 10:09:01 PM »
Re: Escapes-Smuggled messages
I don't know what kind of program your friend is in, but I used to fantasize day in and day out about someone coming to my rescue. If your friend is in a place like Kids or Straight, then you can't send letters or anything else even if it does have their parents name on it. What is the name of the place this person is in? Where is it? Is it a phase type program? Why did this persons parents put them there? How long is the program?


I ask these questions because if its anything like Kids, I would encourage you to do whatever it takes (within reason) to help them get out of there. If they're a minor though, you might be screwed. However, if this individual is about to become 18, you now have a world of options open to you. Go to the local authorities and report that someone is being held illegally by so and so.

But if they're a minor, you and that person would have to disappear until they're 18. I doubt though that if you could be creative enough to get them out of there in a nonviolent manner you would suffer any real consequences.

I will leave you with this; I am assuming that this place is like the place I was locked away in when I was 17. If it is, you need to find out what appropriate action you can take to help your friend get out of there. Tell the authorities that someone you know is in danger and that they need help. Keep stirring things up. Its impossible to explain what those places are like and what they're capable of doing to a young person's mind.

However, you need to give more detail about the situation before  any of us here can give you really effective advice. For all I know this person might be at a very therapuetic place where they are getting the help they need. I don't know. Please provide more detail.

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Offline FaceKhan

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« Reply #4 on: June 01, 2001, 04:52:00 AM »
Escapes-Smuggled messages
My friend Barton Alex Smith is in Alldredge Academy in Tucker County WV. He is about 3 1/2 months from his 18th birthday and was sent on a 3 month program of which he is in his 3rd week. Basically it is a 24 day wilderness trip, then a month of living in a primitive village, then a month in some sort of shabby school building.



The state of WV may be shutting them down because they are an unlicensed facility possibly as soon as Friday 22nd, but if the school is able to get a judge to quash the order by the health dept to close down or if the judge grants them another stay (he was unavailable so they were given a 2 week stay until he was able to hear their appeal) then it becomes more necesary to try to break him out.


My question is that if we were to break him out in a relatively non-violent way, essentially sneaking him out or holding the staff at bay while we get him out, or possibly getting a message to him to fake illness and go to a hospital where we could get him out easilly, would we be in the clear once he turned 18?


He has other friends who live far away (location deliberatly withheld) so hiding him for 3 months is not going to be extremely difficult. Our idea was get him out of there and then hand him off to one of his other friends who can take him far away He is in a hiking group of about 14 kids with a small number of staff, so if we could cause a ruckus and get all the kids in that group to try to escape, they might spend 3 days catching all the other kids and it won't seem unusual that one is still at large until after he is already very far away.



I have spoken to the county sheriff and a woman from the health dept and both said that they do not agree with the 'school' or its methods but they seemed in awe of the kind of money that the school and the parents who support it are able to put up to defend it. The Sheriff seemed to imply he felt the school and the frequent escape attempts which involve his dept were a nuisance and the woman with the county health dept said that she can't imagine sending her kids to a place like that.


I think we will be going forward with the protest I have to get back on track, but I am aiming for Friday 22nd in the afternoon at the school itself. That way if it is ordered to close that morning, we can make sure they do not try to send the kids elsewhere and if they manage to fool the judge into allowing them to stay open then we can make our voices heard. It is several miles from the nearest town according to my info so I do not think the police will take much interest in a protest there. Good idea with the missing poster, maybe Ill make a giant one and make a sign out of it.

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Offline Antigen

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« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2001, 01:50:58 PM »
Escapes-Smuggled messages
I'm not too sure if you'll have any luck disrupting a hike. I know there are kids out there who are just praying daily for such a thing. But after a couple of weeks, I imagine most of the kids are in a physically and psychologically weakened condition. They may not be able to or even willing to rebel. And when it's all over, they have witnesses virtually guaranteed to cover for them regardless of what actually happens.


Sounds like that sheriff and health dept. lady might be real helpful in this. Or maybe not. Did you get any kind of idea what he does with these kids when they escape?


When I got out of Straight back in `82, I was also 3 months away from 18. But in Georgia, 17 is (was? check) the legal age, except for drinking. So one of the Program sympathetic judges in Florida had me extradited from the state of Georgia for the 'crime' of being a runaway in Florida. Georgia held me in their juvenile detention for around 3 weeks or a month. (it was a cake walk by comparison!) then the FL state child welfare department put me up at a halfway house, under restriction to guard against kidnapping by Straightlings.


Eventually, another month or so, I went to court against my parents; they asking to have me put back in Straight, I (on the State's advice) asking to postpone a decision and let me go back to Georgia to spend Christmas with family. On the way out of the courtroom, the HRS atty took me aside and told me not to come back for the court date.


I don't know how HRS even found out about the whole thing. I was just sitting in this detention center, playing Gin Rummy with the girls when they came in and told me I was going back to Florida and that an HRS worker would meet me at the airport.


So you might try to get WV services in on this. It's a high gambit, of course. CPS can be as bad as these programs sometimes. They might try to 'help' him themselves. But, being that they're trying to shut the place down and he could probably help, it might be worth a shot to file a formal abuse complaint and see if they'll get him out.


Have you been out to where the school is? If you can get within sight of the campus without getting hauled off for trespassing, you could tell the health dept that you saw him all bruised up and he looked skinney.


If you're going to protest at the school, get ahold of local media and invite them to cover it. They probably will move the kids to another 'sister' program. But they'll have some sort of legal excuse handy (this has happened before). So you won't be able to stop them just by being there. Do check with that sheriff and make sure he knows what you plan to do and that you know the legal limit (i.e. you can stand here and hold a sign, use a bull-horn but you can't stand on their property or impede traffic, etc.) This becomes a first amendment issue. You have an absolute right to be on public property and get your message out. Looking at the map, the area looks like the whole area is state park land. So you might want to try and make friends with the park service people as well.


Do let us know what happens! Do you know how to put together a press release? Give me a call at 954-481-3559 if you like.

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Offline BostonBrave

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« Reply #6 on: June 01, 2001, 04:53:05 PM »
Escapes-Smuggled messages
  Dear FaceKhan, I would strongly advise against the use of force. You have mentioned freeing your friend in a "relatively" non-violent way,perhaps by holding the staff at bay. How would you do that?with a gun or a knife or a club? Please realize that if you brandish a weapon at someone you are guilty of assault,which could land you behind bars.And if you were arrested you could end up creating public sympathy for the staff.


  The way to defeat these people is through proceedings in court and before the various state agencies charged with the protection of minors. I know that this is not always easy, and that in some states programs such as Straight have sympathizers in high places. But we must have faith that as we continue to shed the light on brutality, the citizenry will demand an end to it.We must approach the forums with clean hands.


  I realize that what I say is cold comfort to one who sees a friend in agony.But I would strongly urge you to stay on the right side of the law.

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Offline tommyfromhyde

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« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2001, 06:37:42 PM »
Re: Escapes-Smuggled messages
    Remember that if he's still a minor when you get him out you could be in violation of a Federal law called the Mann Act if you transport him across state lines. Also, Greyhound employees are now trained to turn in apparent runaways so that might not be an answer either.

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Offline FaceKhan

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« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2001, 07:02:30 PM »
Escaping
Yeah, the more I go over any kind of rescue attempt in my head the more I see the futility of it. If we try to break him out without any kind of weapon, we will fail, if we bring a weapon, we are criminals, still I am convinced of the rightness of the act.  I'll keep working within these ridiculous laws until I have exhausted all the options they provide, but if he were to get out of the place on his own, I would help him get away.


The local sheriff said that they generally don't even file a report, they just take them back to the academy. He said that the state police is sometimes called instead of his office so I may have better luck finding some information there.


As for the state lines issue, I think the way around that is to drive to the state line and let him walk across it on his own. Then I am not transporting him across state lines, just across states.  

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All of the darkness of the world cannot put out the light of one small candle.\"

Offline FaceKhan

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« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2001, 07:11:49 PM »
Ways out
I have not been to the school yet, but I am probably going to go there on Friday after the hearing. I probably won't be able to get to where Alex is but I should be able to see the building where some of the kids in their 3rd month are being held. I am hoping that the hiking portion of the trip is on public land because then I can make contact with him or at least get close enough to see him. They supposedly hike 10-12+ miles a day so I doubt that they would be remaining on the relatively meager 100+ acre property. I can then report what I see or if I get a chance to speak to him, I can report to CPS what he told me. The problem with the law is that minors can be held against their will, something that is illegal for adults, and they can be isolated from the outside. Even prisoners in a supermax have more rights and more contact with the outside than teens in one of these programs. We need strict regulation of these facilities or they need to be eliminated entirely.


If not getting along with our parents was a disease, we would all be dead.

If not getting along with our parents was a mental illness, we would all be insane.

If not getting along with our parents was a crime, we would all be serving life sentences as habitual offenders.

« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
All of the darkness of the world cannot put out the light of one small candle.\"

Offline Max Greene

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« Reply #10 on: September 02, 2001, 02:13:50 AM »
Re: Escapes-Smuggled messages
At St. Pete the parents are forced to be an integral part of the program. If a newcomer escapes they will not be able to go home since their parents will probably send them back. The staff and clients alike were uncanny in their ability to tell by looking at people if they are ready to cop out. The day I copped out I was actually reported by my newcomer as a possible cop out before I ran--wow, what awareness!


Also, if you are court ordered they will chase you down no matter where you go. We would see people who copped out months ago being brought back after hiding in swamps, malls, and one was found on a train going to Kansas City.


The police were always more than willing to help with the return of newcomers as well.


With my first paycheck from the St. Pete times I bought a bus ticket and hid out in downtown St. Pete until I could hop on the bus and on to Charlotte.

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